We currently live in an era where it seems that every new product released is extolled as being "revolutionary," "ground-breaking" or ascending "to the next level." It is refreshing to have someone tell it to you straight. I recently had the opportunity to talk with Dave Williams of Springfield Armory who said this about the newest XD Mod.2: "The XD Mod.2 is an evolutionary product. We've continually been improving the XD, and the Mod.2 is the result so far."
If you take any product and work on a regular basis to improve a detail or feature, you'll develop, after a relatively short time, a product markedly superior to its original version.
The XD Mod.2 fits that description very nicely. The original XD dates back to the turn of the 21st century and has earned a well-deserved reputation for ruggedness and reliability. Since then, Springfield Armory has continually tuned, refined and improved it.
The Mod.2 version has an improved and hand-specific GripZone frame texturing, featuring three different textures. Unlike other designs, shooters get only the most aggressive design underneath their hand in the area where it's needed.
The grip shape has been sculpted to be more comfortable in the majority of hand sizes and altered to lift the hand area of the frame fore and aft. All of this produces a grip that is slightly larger than a single-stack pistol, yet twice the capacity.
The slide and barrel are given a Melonite treatment, a hard surface treatment that reduces wear and enhances corrosion resistance. Afterward, they are both given a black oxide finish. The front sight is a fiber-optic design with a small red tube that collects light and directs it toward our aiming eye. The sights are steel and have a black oxide finish, as well.
The hammer-forged barrel is match-marked and, based on our previous experience with Springfield XD pistols, when they say "match" they mean it shoots like a house afire. This one certainly did. Williams also explained, "The barrel has been designed to be even more robust, as is the locking block/rail system, which increases service life and durability."
I affixed a LaserLyte Lyte Rider to the XD Mod.2 accessory rail, which shrugged off G&A's testing regimen. The weight of an accessory did not affect function.
The XD Mod.2 Sub-Compact with 3-inch barrel is available in 9mm and .40 S&W. Magazine capacity for the 9mm is 13 rounds with the compact magazine or 16 rounds with the longer X-Tension magazine. The X-Tension magazine has a sleeve surrounding the base of the magazine that acts as a continuation of the XD Mod.2 frame for better grip. With the X-Tension in place, shooters have a short-barreled carry gun with the capacity of a full-size pistol. In .40 S&W, the capacities are 9 and 12 rounds.
Are colored polymer frames as strong as their black counterparts? Williams was cheerful about this aspect and said, "The Mod.2 is available in FDE, as well as the traditional standard black. Neither is more or less durable than the other. Customers wanted it, so we now offer it."
The end result is a compact, high(er)-capacity pistol that is great to hold, easy to carry and shoots exceedingly well. It virtually does it all.